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Old February 8th, 2012, 05:15 AM   #1
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Nailing down a file format for delivery

Hi Guys

My terms had stated that the completed video will be delivered as a "digital file". However, I've had a client come back with requests for the file in all manner of formats (Windows Media to compressed MP4 for web streaming to Quicktime to DVD), aspect ratios and sizes (actual file size limits, data rates and data limits). I've provided these to the client, putting it down to experience, but feel that my current "digital file" statement is wide open to interpretation, so I would like to nail this down.

To update my terms, I'm thinking that a 'letter of engagement' the client must agree to prior to me beginning the work must state all of the exact digital file format(s), aspect ratios, data rates, data limits they require their delivered video to be in. If they don't specify anything, they will be furnished with a 'default' top quality Quicktime file. Then, should they change their mind about their requested delivery formats etc AFTER they've agreed on the letter of engagement, the additional encoding will be subject to extra cost.

How does that sound to you?

Warm regards

Peter
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Old February 8th, 2012, 08:59 AM   #2
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

Open MPEG Streamclip.

Command-B, open a batch.

Drop your completed export in there.

Make how ever many versions they want.

Start the batch.

Go to bed.

Awaken the next morning.

Zip the files, deliver to happy client.

We are not talking about going out and shooting more footage, or hiring a crew, or you having to continuously turn a crank while your videos compress. You type some numbers into a computer program and then wait for it to finish. I don't know what part of this business you're in, but my clients don't have the first idea what "exact digital file format(s), aspect ratios, data rates, data limits" they require - if they did, they wouldn't need me.
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Old February 8th, 2012, 10:57 AM   #3
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

Okay fair enough Mike, thanks for giving me some perspective on it.
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Old February 10th, 2012, 10:43 AM   #4
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

I agree with Mike that batch processing is an efficient way to deal with multiple formats. I hope that people are accounting for that in their overall cost of the job, though. Even though it's just the computer sitting there working away, it's time that should be paid for. It costs you for overhead, electricity, eventually upgrading your computer, etc. Just my $.02.

Have fun!

Rob
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Old February 13th, 2012, 12:21 PM   #5
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

That's great Rob thanks. The particular client kept asking every week for an additional format in different ratio, size, data rate etc which was a bit frustrating. I'd be happy to batch process the whole lot in one go, but this one was dragging out quite a bit. Thanks again for your feedback.
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Old February 14th, 2012, 09:13 AM   #6
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

Sounds similar to the problem with the client in this thread: Endless requested tweaks to edit

Sometimes you run into a person that's just never satisfied. (It's not the same client, is it?) They can really alienate people if they don't watch it. Perfectionism should be the eighth deadly sin.
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Old February 15th, 2012, 02:11 PM   #7
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

After I got tired of making their dupes, I start to get harder to get ahold of. When they make a request for another, different encode, I tell them I'll get to it as soon as I can - end of next week or the beginning of the week after.
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Old February 15th, 2012, 02:44 PM   #8
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

I charge a nominal fee to set up a render/batch export with as many formats as they require (within reason). If they require something after the fact that wasn't on the list, I charge the fee again... ASSUMING it's something that takes more than 5 minutes. Gets clients to get their requirements sorted out usually.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 01:42 AM   #9
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Van Duyn View Post
Sounds similar to the problem with the client in this thread: Endless requested tweaks to edit

Sometimes you run into a person that's just never satisfied. (It's not the same client, is it?) They can really alienate people if they don't watch it. Perfectionism should be the eighth deadly sin.
Hi Roger

Yeah same client! All done and dusted now thank goodness!

Peter
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 01:43 AM   #10
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Re: Nailing down a file format for delivery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
I charge a nominal fee to set up a render/batch export with as many formats as they require (within reason). If they require something after the fact that wasn't on the list, I charge the fee again... ASSUMING it's something that takes more than 5 minutes. Gets clients to get their requirements sorted out usually.
Good advice Shaun thanks :)
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